Source says GOP tax bill will preserve EV and wind tax credits

POLICY:
• A source says House and Senate negotiators have agreed to keep a $7,500 tax credit for electric vehicles and a wind production tax credit in their final tax bill. (Bloomberg)
• Republicans are starting to reconsider the GOP tax bill’s cuts to renewable energy, which could threaten wind and solar jobs for their constituents. (Vox)

RENEWABLES:
• Renewable energy resources, excluding hydropower, are expected to reach 10 percent of U.S. electricity generation next year. (Utility Dive)
• As more U.S. cities commit to 100 percent renewable energy goals, utilities are realizing they must either work with municipalities or risk losing customers. (Utility Dive)

SOLAR:
• Dozens of U.S. mayors from across the country release a joint statement in support of solar energy. (Solar Industry)
• Appalachian Power is planning its first utility-scale solar generation project in Virginia. (Solar Industry)

STORAGE: California regulators will vote next month on whether Pacific Gas & Electric will have to replace three natural gas plants with energy storage. (Los Angeles Times)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: In a move that threatens to encroach on Tesla’s territory, Toyota and Panasonic are teaming up to investigate the technological potential of batteries that use prismatic cells, which can power electric cars.

California and Washington join agreement to strengthen carbon pricing

CLIMATE:
• At a climate summit in Paris, California and Washington state join an agreement to step up the use of pricing CO2 emissions to slow climate change. (New York Times, Reuters)
• The Arctic is experiencing unprecedented warming, with sea ice declining at a rate not seen in at least the last 1,500 years, according to a report by a group of federal scientists. (Washington Post)

SOLAR:
• The U.S. solar supply chain and small businesses could suffer the most if tariffs are imposed on imported solar panels. (Supply Chain Dive)
• Maine’s Republican governor wants to reverse a decision to delay a phase-out in net-metering compensation for new solar panel owners. (Associated Press)
• Arizona Supreme Court justices will hear oral arguments on whether leased rooftop solar systems should be subject to property tax.

Studies warn climate change could decrease wind turbine production

WIND: Changing wind patterns due to climate change could decrease the output of turbines, with a 17 percent drop predicted in the central U.S., according to two recent studies. (Washington Post, The Guardian)

ALSO:
• Increased wind energy generation is helping to lower greenhouse gas emissions in Iowa. (Radio Iowa)
• Idaho regulators lowered wind integration rates for Rocky Mountain Power from $3.06 per MWh to $0.57 per MWh for small facilities. (Utility Dive)

SOLAR:
• Officials dedicated two solar plants near Las Vegas that will produce 179 megawatts for a commercial data company. (Associated Press)
• Three cities in the Southeast are among those hosting federally funded training for architects and other design professionals in an effort to support solar adoption. (Southeast Energy News)

SMART GRID: Some researchers and health care professionals say smart grid-enabled switches designed to make homes more energy efficient and grid-responsive could have an added benefit of helping seniors age in place.

FERC gets another month to decide on coal and nuclear subsidies

POLICY:
• Energy Secretary Rick Perry grants a request by FERC’s new chairman to give the agency 30 more days to decide on a DOE proposal to subsidize coal and nuclear plants. (Utility Dive, Greenech Media)
• The proposal to prop up coal and nuclear plants has united renewable energy advocates, natural gas producers, conservative think tanks and environmental groups — all of which oppose the rule. (The Hill)

CAP-AND-TRADE: A climate-action group founded by billionaire Tom Steyer is spending $75,000 on a digital ad campaign in support of cap-and-trade legislation in Oregon. (Portland Business Journal)

POLITICS: Documents obtained by the Washington Post show a uranium mining company lobbied the Trump administration to reduce the size of Bears Ears National Monument in Utah, which is slated to be shrunk by 85 percent. (Washington Post)

SOLAR:
• Groups will challenge a state law that gradually reduces net-metering rates for new solar customers in Maine’s Supreme Judicial Court this week.

Report: U.S. solar output grows by 47 percent in 2017

SOLAR:
• A Department of Energy report shows U.S. solar output grew 47 percent during the first nine months of 2017. (PV Magazine)
• Duke energy purchased California-based REC solar to expand its clean energy offerings for commercial and industrial companies. (Greentech Media)

WIND: NextEra Energy and American Electric Power opened a $200 million, 120 MW wind project in Indiana. (Electric Light & Power)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Car-sharing companies like Zipcar are pushing cities to expand their electric vehicle charging infrastructure and inspiring users to buy their own EVs. (InsideClimate News)

BIOFUEL: Republican senators met with President Trump to push for a rollback of the federal biofuel mandate, an idea he is reportedly open to.

Federal trade officials show interest in solar tariff alternative

SOLAR:
• At the final hearing in a case brought by Suniva and SolarWorld, a trade panel shows interest in a proposal to implement an import license fee system for solar panels instead of tariffs. (Greentech Media)
• Republican senators are urging President Trump not to impose tariffs on imported solar panels. (Washington Examiner)

STORAGE: Energy storage deployments are up 46 percent compared to a year ago, according to a new report. (Greentech Media)

WIND:
• A look at why developers scrapped plans for a troubled offshore wind project in Massachusetts, just as U.S. offshore wind development is taking off. (Greentech Media)
• A plant in South Dakota that manufactures wind turbines and employs 409 is closing.

Federal trade agency to hear final arguments on solar tariffs today

SOLAR: More than 30 witnesses will argue for and against solar tariffs at a final trade hearing in Washington, D.C., today. (Greentech Media)

ALSO:
• The Solar Energy Industries Association unveils a plan for President Trump to grow U.S. solar manufacturing without the use of tariffs. (Utility Dive)
• Emails obtained by E&E News show that bankrupt solar manufacturer Suniva was in talks with federal trade officials as early as March, almost a month before it launched a petition for tariffs on imported solar panels. • A group-buying program for residential solar customers in Philadelphia will launch a second round that includes an option for subsidized financing for low- and moderate-income households. (Philadelphia Inquirer)
• Maine utility regulators delay a rule that gradually reduces net-metering rates for new rooftop solar customers.

Trump shrinks national monuments in Utah, opening door to fossil fuel development

POLITICS:
• In an effort to open lands to developers, President Trump drastically shrinks two national monuments in Utah, marking the largest elimination of federally protected lands in U.S. history. (Washington Post)
• Five Native American tribes announce plans to sue the Trump administration for scaling back the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments in Utah. (Deseret News)

POLICY: Experts say provisions in the Senate tax bill would hurt the value of renewable energy credits and “pretty much blow up the tax equity market for wind.” (Greentech Media)

SOLAR:
• Market uncertainty surrounding possible solar tariffs has caused the average fixed-tilt utility-scale solar price to rise back above $1 per watt, according to a new report. (Greentech Media)
• Many of the nation’s top commercial solar owners are expected to grow their 2017 installations by 68 percent, increasing their share of the market from 21 percent last year to 32 percent this year, according to a new report.

Critics say Senate tax bill boosts fossil fuels, hurts clean energy

POLICY: The newly approved Senate tax bill would open the Arctic to oil and gas development, weaken investment incentives for solar and wind production and end a $7,500 tax credit for electric vehicles. (Los Angeles Times, The Hill)

POLITICS: Two senators write a letter asking President Trump to explain why he’s removing protections for the Bears Ears National Monument in Utah when the U.S. Department of Agriculture did not recommend the change. (New York Times, Washington Post)

CLIMATE: The head of Google’s research and development lab talks about some of its most notable efforts to fight climate change and reduce emissions. (Greentech Media)

STORAGE: The governor of New York approves an energy storage target that could reduce regulatory barriers and spur adoption of storage in the state. (Greentech Media)

WIND:
• Operations and maintenance spending on North America’s aging wind energy sector will surpass $40 billion by 2025, according to a new report.

Senate: Republican proposal to drill in Arctic refuge requires environmental review

OIL & GAS: A Senate official rules that a Republican proposal to open Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling is subject to an environmental assessment by the Interior Department, which could take months or years to complete. (Reuters)

ALSO:
• A U.S. subsidiary of a Netherlands-based maker of offshore oil drilling equipment pleads guilty to paying bribes to officials in five oil-producing countries and must pay $238 million as part of a settlement. (Associated Press)
• A commission overseeing water quality moves to enact a formal ban on fracking within the Delaware River Basin watershed, which supplies Philadelphia and half of New York City with drinking water. (Associated Press)

PIPELINES:
• FERC Chairman Neil Chatterjee tells a meeting of natural gas industry officials that climate activists are delaying the approval of natural gas pipelines by waging legal battles, saying their lawyers understand how to “frustrate pipeline development.” (Reuters)
• Opponents of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline highlight the project’s environmental justice impact, pointing out that over a quarter of North Carolina’s Native Americans live along its proposed path. (Southeast Energy News)
• Michigan officials are taking a closer look at what it would take to tunnel Enbridge’s Line 5 pipeline beneath the Straits of Mackinac, as many unanswered questions remain.